Manadrain and ginger syrup cake

This riff on Claudia Roden's Middle Eastern orange cake gets its gorgeous moist texture from boiled and puréed mandarins folded into the ginger-scented batter. It's beautiful served warm from the oven, but equally enjoyable for a couple of days.

You'll need

3 mandarins (about 95gm each), washed, unpeeled 4 eggs 270 gm (1¼ cups) caster sugar 90 gm melted butter 400 gm hazelnut meal 75 gm (½ cup) plain flour 2 tsp finely grated ginger ⅓ tsp baking powder   Mandarin and ginger syrup 220 gm (1 cup) caster sugar 125 ml (½ cup) mandarin juice 1 tbsp julienne ginger 4 mandarins, peeled and thickly sliced crossways Juice of ½ lemon


  • 01
  • Preheat oven to 160C and butter and flour a 12cm x 20cm loaf tin (we used a fluted loaf tin). Place mandarins in a saucepan, cover with plenty of water, bring to the boil and cook until soft (20-25 minutes). Drain, cool and chop (discard seeds), then purée in a blender or food processor.
  • 02
  • Whisk eggs and sugar in an electric mixer until pale and fluffy (3-4 minutes). Fold in mandarin purée and butter, then fold in hazelnut meal, flour, ginger, baking powder and a pinch of salt. Spoon into prepared tin, smooth top and bake until golden brown and a skewer inserted withdraws clean (1-1¼ hours). Turn out onto a wire rack to cool.
  • 03
  • For mandarin and ginger syrup, combine sugar, mandarin juice and 125ml water in a saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve sugar, then add the ginger and simmer until translucent and a light syrup forms (6-8 minutes). Stir in mandarin slices and lemon juice, remove from heat and leave to cool.
  • 04
  • Serve cake with mandarin and ginger syrup spooned on top. Cake will keep stored in an airtight container for 3 days.

At A Glance

  • Serves 6 - 8 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 - 8 people

Featured in

July 2017

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